Chaos Marine Codex…first thoughts

Too scary for tournament players?

Even before the new codex is out the sneakier among us have had a peep at the new book. The feedback I get from the tournament chaps that I play with is that the new codex is….rubbish! Why? Because it is not geared for competition play and will not deliver consistent, predictable playability in a tournament setting.

I am torn because I both agree and disagree with the prophets of doom. This is the first codex that is built for 6th ed.  6th edition is not a competitive system and therefore we should not be surprised that this codex (and those that follow) are designed to deliver  colourful play rather than predictable and repeatable play – it is Chaos after all.

Therefore I must agree that the codex is not for tournament players but it can deliver a lot of randomness that from time to time will discomfort opponents.  For me this is a great thing that will really put an unpredictable stick in the spokes of the tournament players band wagon – but only occasionally. On the other hand it does provide any player with an enourmous palette of opportunities with which to do interesting things.

It is the vast number of permutations and combinations that is both the strength and the weakness of this codex. A player can do almost anything – for a cost – which means no opponent will ever know what to expect. Of course that is the down side for tournament players who will not know what they have until they start to play with it!

I fully intend to make use of the randomness, Boon of Chaos, Psychic powers, etc etc but I understand why competitive players will flinch when they first see this codex. For modellers, converters and painters i think the codex is fantastic. I am looking forward to getting beaten regularly but I think that this codex will put a smile on my face even then, and one in a while the Dark Gods will smile on me.

Somewhere in this book are numerous really entertaining armies that will be a joy to paint and to play with even if they will not deliver wins in a tournament environment. To each his own, but for those with a scintilla of imagination and the strength to play for the sheer joy of the game, then i think this codex delivers in spades.

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13 thoughts on “Chaos Marine Codex…first thoughts

  1. Says the tzeentch player! Try looking at it from a slaanesh or khorne angle and you’ll see that it’s just a rehash of the last codex with daemon engines instead of daemons.
    Bring back Pete Haines!

  2. Its Crap :-)). Welcome to my new God Tzeentch with Tzeentch Daemons. Only way to run Mono God.
    Mike you selling your Tzeentch Marines

  3. Agree with Gary that if feels like a rehash of the last codex, if you look at the cult units, Rest of it got a bit interesting but nothing that looks OTT – which is great from a fun point of view and thankfully means it won’t be yawn spawned at tournaments.

    I wish GW would make all their codexes like this – for the points you pay for things the codex feels equal over its entirety. Its just naff compared to the other codexes out there.

    Biggest disappointment for me was like of cult units outside of the four units and also where are my legion specifics!! I want sneaky chaos marines back!!

    I think its on a level with the nid codex, has some neat combos but they don’t work against everything.

  4. Having had a sneak peak I can agree with Mike and Chris. Cult units are pretty much the same with little tweaks but there are loads of options for most units and some of the new ones look interresting. Not a spamalot list by any means but maybe that will keep the bandwaggoners out for a while. Then I can carry on gribbling across the gaming scene LOL to my little putrid hearts are content, poping the odd boil over the hard nuts and making their cheese go mouldy HAHAHAHAHAHA!!
    At least it is a big improvement on the last crappy book we had, now where’s me green stuff ???

  5. I thinks its weesome.
    I like your overview of it.
    However I think tourny wise it’ll be great.

    Shame the no brainier winge mongers of the tourny world will moan and cry because it not broken.
    Learn to play better!;p

    • Easy for a pus brained Nurgling to say that, Plague Marines have always been good :P.
      Learn to listen to your customers GW and give them what they wanted….Legion rules.

  6. Isn’t that what you wanted rather than the customer base? :p

    I think you could do a pretty neat Slaanesh army with the codex, albeit it won’t be top tier. But it would be cool.

    • Sorry your comment about customer base has gone right over my head so I don’t know what you mean.

      I can definitely make a cool looking mono Slaanesh army, but I already have one that is still illegal thanks to GW’s refusal to give customers what they want.
      18 Noise Marine Havocs
      2 Blastmaster Predators
      6 Noise Marine Terminators
      36 Slaanesh cultists with shotguns.

      6th edition hasn’t inspired me enough to start from scratch 😦

      • You keep saying what the customer base and the customers want but how do you know it’s what they want?

        Yeah there probably is a vocal request for legion specific books but I would suggest its a minority of GWs customer base. Although as you are part of that minority I can see why you would think that those views are large enough for GW to take in board.

        Can you not look at the codex positively and try and add new stuff to your existing castigators?

        I’m sure you don’t have to start from scratch. Sure you may have to do a couple of new units and some arm swaps but you could do some cool slaanesh inspired walkers based on the new units.

        You just seem to be looking for the negatives in everything. Sure the new codex isn’t what you hoped for but if you took a glass half full approach you could work with it, especially as you don’t give a monkeys about it being competitive or not.

      • Stupid blog won’t let me reply to a reply so I’ll stick it here instead.

        I think you’re wrong that Chaos players wanting Legion rules are in the minority, I suppose it’s difficult to prove really, but if you look at the chaos players who post here, the majority wanted legion rules. Me, Neil, Rob & Chris have all said that they’re disappointed that they cannot use legion specific rules to make their favourite legion. Chaos players tend to follow a particular god or legion and in doing so often handicap themselves by doing so, legion rules help towards overcoming these disadvantages.
        It’s really no different than Space Wolves being forced to use the Space Marine Codex.

        As for my army, yes I really do have to start from scratch, I have 30 Noise Marines, 24 of which need to have their arms removed just to make them playable. I can use my Vindicator and two Rhinos and that’s about it.
        The Codex is 10 to 15% over costed in my opinion, so any Chaos army will have to be very frugal when it comes to wasting points, Defilers for example have increased 35pts to 195pts and this is in an edition where vehicles have been reduced in effectiveness to the point of exclusion.
        I have no problem using underpowered units but nobody likes getting slapped silly game after game, so of course I want it to be competitive to some degree.

        The glass is indeed half full, but I’d rather not say what it’s full of 😉

  7. I’m surprised no one commented on the codex price hike, and the change in production values, reflected in the ‘new look’ White Dwarf. Perhaps GW looked at the FFG Dark heresy books, and realised that publishing has moved on somewhat. The new models look impressive, even if they are major modelling projects in their own right. I just wonder who 40k is aimed at now, since the entry cost (rules + codex) is quite steep. Compare this to Dropzone Commander where the rules are fifteen quid (full colour paperback) and an army pack is around sixty quid. Sure, the latter is aimed at ‘real’ wargamers, but still, makes you think don’t it?

  8. Having read through it a few times my 8K of Chaos will be remaining on the shelf but I will secretly be hoping that GW rerelease all of the other Armies in a relatively short space of time and that they are as balanced as this one.

    I do like the production standard of the codex though – even if there is not really any new fluff in there. Still £30 is more than the core rules for most other Wargames.

    I do have to agree with Neil though that mono TZ Daemons are the way to go thanks to the White Dwarf Suplement. Although it is a sad day when TZ Daemons out combat anything Khorne in either the Daemon Codex or the NEW CSM Codex.

    I have pretty much given up hope on ever seeing the Chaos Legions again :o(

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